Earlier last month, Burundians arriving at the border were made to wash their hands as part of preventative measures against coronavirus

Burundi and Sierra Leone, which were part of a handful of African countries yet to confirm cases of the coronavirus, have recorded their first positive results.

There had been doubts over Burundi’s claim that no-one in the country had coronavirus. The president’s spokesperson said the nation was an exception because it put “God first”.

Health Minister Thadée Ndikumana announced on Tuesday that two nationals had tested positive for the virus after travelling from Rwanda and Dubai.

In Sierra Leone, a 37-year-old man who had arrived from France was found to have Covid-19 at the end of his quarantine period.

The government said it would not announce a total lockdown yet but a year-long state of public health emergency has already been declared, commercial flights suspended and schools ordered to close.